Beyond the Progressive Story: Reframing Resistance to European Integration

Ort am HIS | Beginn: 29.03.2023 14:45 Uhr

In view of the recurrent crises that have hit the European Union over the last two decades, dominant assumptions about its historical development are under revision. Whereas important theories of integration mainly elaborated explanations of European integration as a linear progressive teleological process, recent criticism casts doubt on their capacity to capture the twists and turns both of current and past developments of the European Communities and Union. Particularly, the picture of the European Union as a political entity inexorably on its way to ever-deepening supranational unity has been called into question.

The conference is organized by the participants of the research project “(De)Constructing Europe”, a cooperation between the Max Weber Foundation and the Hamburg Institute for Social Research, funded by the German Ministry for Education and Research (BMBF). The conference will contribute to a reconceptualization of the history of Europeanization by starting from the observation that resistance and opposition to the EEC and the EU should not be conceived as mere obstacles that had to be overcome on the way to integration. Rather, they have often been important factors in shaping the institutions and policies of European cooperation that have emerged since the end of the Second World War. Multiple conceptions of Europe have intertwined and clashed, constantly redefining the scope and character of European integration, which consequently has not proceeded in a linear fashion and has not been consistently underpinned by a single vision.

By focusing on concrete historical trajectories and changes of direction, the conference aims to develop perspectives other than that of the conventional “teleological view” of European integration. 

Wednesday, March 29
Chair: Wolfgang Knöbl
3.00 Introduction: Philipp Müller (Hamburg)
3.15 Daniele Pasquinucci (Siena): A Forgotten Interaction: Europeanism, Anti-Europeanism, and the Building of Europe.
4.30 Andrea Martinez (Rome): “Europe constructed, Europe contested”: Comparing Italian media responses to the Treaties of Paris and Rome
5.15 David Lawton (London): Lawyers Against European Union: The Maastricht Judicial Review, 1992-1993
7.00 Public Keynote Lecture by Kiran Patel (Munich): Putting Permissive Consensus to Rest. Rethinking Societal Attitudes Vis-à-Vis European Integration

Thursday, March 30
Chair: Martin Baumeister
9.15 Antonio Carbone (Rome): North-South Divide at the Communitarian and Regional Scale: Italian and French Farmers facing EEC´s Southern Enlargement
10.00 Katharina Troll (Hamburg): Debating Europe Transnationally: The Council of European Industrial Federations and the Struggle over European Integration, 1950-1962
11.15 Larissa Kraft (Glasgow): (Re-)Narrating the Past in Pursuit of Different Visions of Europe: French Policymaking Discourses on Britain’s First Application to Join the European Communities, 1961–63
12.00 Olga Gontarska (Warsaw): Creating a Forum for Eurosceptic Exchange. Polish historians as public intellectuals in the pre-accession period

Chair: Milos Reznik
2.00 Philip Bajon (Frankfurt, Main), Resisting the Majority. Informal Decision-Making in the EC/EU, 1958-2016
2.45 Victor Jaeschke (Potsdam): “The Magic Word for Europe-Weary”. Subsidiarity and its Limits as a Potential Cure for Euroscepticism, 1988-1992
4.00 Johannes Großmann (Tübingen): Europe in Black. A Conservative Alternative to European Integration from the 1950s to the 1990s
4.45 Beata Jurkowicz (Warsaw): Eurosceptical Trends among Anti-communist Opposition in Poland between 1976 and 1980
5.30 Simona Guerra (Surrey): When Traditionalism and Religion Meet the EU: The Polish Case in Comparative Perspective
6.15 End of the second day

Friday, March 31
Chair: Christina von Hodenberg
9.00 Alexander Hobe (Hamburg): The Europeanization of Wehrmacht veterans at the time of the European Defense Community
09.45 Eleni Kouki (Athens): Europe in decay. The Greek Junta’s rhetoric on European integration (1967-1974)
11.00 Philipp Müller (Hamburg): Outside Europe. Managing Economic Relations Between EC Member States and the Portuguese Colonial Empire in the 1970s
11.45 William King (London): Alf Lomas, International Politics, the British Labour Group and the European Parliament, 1979-89
12. 30 Concluding Remarks

Contact: Felix Beyersdorff